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An Army at Dawn

Book 1, The Liberation Trilogy - The War in North Africa, 1942-1943, Volume One of the Liberation Trilogy

This book can be downloaded and read in iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.



In the first volume of his monumental trilogy about the liberation of Europe in WW II, Pulitzer Prize winner Rick Atkinson tells the riveting story of the war in North Africa

The liberation of Europe and the destruction of the Third Reich is a story of courage and enduring triumph, of calamity and miscalculation. In this first volume of the Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson shows why no modern reader can understand the ultimate victory of the Allied powers without a grasp of the great drama that unfolded in North Africa in 1942 and 1943. That first year of the Allied war was a pivotal point in American history, the moment when the United States began to act like a great power.

Beginning with the daring amphibious invasion in November 1942, An Army at Dawn follows the American and British armies as they fight the French in Morocco and Algeria, and then take on the Germans and Italians in Tunisia. Battle by battle, an inexperienced and sometimes poorly led army gradually becomes a superb fighting force. Central to the tale are the extraordinary but fallible commanders who come to dominate the battlefield: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, Montgomery, and Rommel.

Brilliantly researched, rich with new material and vivid insights, Atkinson's narrative provides the definitive history of the war in North Africa.

From Publishers Weekly

Jul 08, 2002 – Atkinson won a Pulitzer Prize during his time as a journalist and editor at the Washington Post and is the author of The Long Gray Line: The American Journey of West Point's Class of 1966 and of Crusade: The Untold Story of the Persian Gulf War. In contrast to Crusade's illustrations of technomastery, this book depicts the U.S. Army's introduction to modern war. The Tunisian campaign, Atkinson shows, was undertaken by an American army lacking in training and experience alongside a British army whose primary experience had been of defeat. Green units panicked, abandoning wounded and weapons. Clashes between and within the Allies seemed at times to overshadow the battles with the Axis. Atkinson's most telling example is the relationship of II Corps commander George Patton and his subordinate, 1st Armored Division's Orlando Ward. The latter was a decent person and capable enough commander, but he lacked the final spark of ruthlessness that takes a division forward in the face of heavy casualties and high obstacles. With Dwight Eisenhower's approval, Patton fired him. The result was what Josef Goebbels called a "second Stalingrad"; after Tunisia, the tide of war rolled one way: toward Berlin. Atkinson's visceral sympathies lie with Ward; his subtext from earlier books remains unaltered: in war, they send for the hard men. Despite diction that occasionally lapses into the melodramatic, general readers and specialists alike will find worthwhile fare in this intellectually convincing and emotionally compelling narrative.

Customer Reviews

Great read!

Knew the basics, but Rick really brings out the detail in a very readable way. Shocked to learn we had to fight the French before we could fight the Germans! Rommel was a genius and we were lucky he didn't have a higher priority from Berlin for men & materials. His style is so engaging, you catch yourself wondering the outcome of battles even when you knew ahead of time the results. The way school history books should read....engagingly!

An Army at Dawn

I am a WWII junkie. I totally loved reading this book. I already knew about the North African Campaign but never in such detail. If you want to read in depth about the ground campaign of WWII in Europe and Africa, this is the first of a three volume set you should read. I have read both volumes and I'm anxiously awaiting the release of the third.

As good as it gets

The American Army's drive across North Africa in the early days of World War II is a tale of an inexperienced army stumbling its way from blunder to blunder at the cost of thousands of lives before finding the strength to regroup and drive the German and Italian armies out of Tunisia. No one could tell it better than Rick Atkinson, who uses official records and the letters and memories of the soldiers to tell this great story, the first of a series on the American Army in the war.

Other Books in This Series

An Army at Dawn
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Military
  • Published: May 15, 2007
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
  • Seller: Macmillan
  • Print Length: 1180 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Series: Book 1, The Liberation Trilogy
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings